Biodiversity of life on earth and one of the pillars of sustainable development. The richness and variety of life on earth makes possible the ecosystem services on which we depend: clean water, food, shelter, medicine and clothing. Biological diversity is under severe threat from a wide variety of factors including habitat loss and fragmentation, over exploitation of natural resources, the spread of harmful introduced species, pollution, climate change, and many more. As human pressure on the natural environment increased, biodiversity has inevitably declined. The ultimate reasons for increasing pressure can be linked to a long phase of exponential growth in the human population. By conserving biodiversity, we not only ensure that our surroundings are richer and more diverse, but we secure the resources that will continue to bring about improvement in the quality of human life. Although conservation has not yet succeeded in bringing about dramatic and favourable changes in the environment, it has had a beneficial influence in government and other institutions. The state of knowledge, access to expertise and awareness of the problems and how to deal with them, has been greatly enhanced over the past few decades. We are in a far better position to make real strides towards conserving biodiversity than ever before. In order to promote the cause of biodiversity conservation and create awareness among the public in general, 22nd May is being celebrated worldwide as the International Day for Biological Diversity. As a state level celebration of International Day for Biological Diversity in Odisha, PROGREESS had organised a conference on 22nd May 2019 on “Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Development in Odisha” at Rambha (Ganjam). The programme was fully supported by Preventation cruelty against animal and plant (PCAP). The Awareness meeting was inaugurated by Rtd. Professor Dr. Santharam Pathik, , Himanchal Pradesh University of Agriculture and Technology (HUAT), who was the Chief Guest of the said programme. A booklet containing the abstracts of presentations to be made during the awareness meeting .The scientific sessions/ paper presentations started after the inaugural function and some 40 invited delegates presented their findings/ views under the following four selected themes. (i). Forest Biodiversity (ii) Coastal & Wetland Biodiversity (iii). Agricultural Biodiversity & Livestock (iv) Biodiversity Education, Role of Community, Legal and Policy Issues etc. (Wildlife), It is expected that the recommendations/ suggestions made out of the deliberations during this meeting would be useful for formulation of strategies for conservation of the biological diversity of Odisha and also address livelihood and development issues for fishermen community.
Conducted Organic cultivation/Promotion & Strengthing of Livelihood programme :
The organization has conducted organic cultivation, promotion and strengthening of livelihood programme was started at Sorada Block with support of KASAM, Kandhamal since last. The organization has been organized meeting, awareness discussion regarding organic farming with active cooperation of Farmer/ CBO/SHG and PRI members. There has been taken organic cultivation of vegetable, paddy, Millets and Grams etc. Implementation of Organic cultivation is wide response among farmers. Farmers are interested with new technologies and methodology of organic farming and culture. Volunteers of the organization have demonstrated like Handikhata/ Nimastra/ Brahmastra /Jivamruta & Bio-Pesticide (Panchagavya ) etc. in 4 Cluster – Gocha, Gopalapur Sasan , Laxmipur, Goudagotha, Merikote and Genja panchayat. Now Organic cultivation has covered morethan 1250 Ac. in Sorada Block.
In this context, the organization has opened 2 office are Sapuapalli (Field Office) and Block office in Sorada town, The organization was conducted a mega farmer meeting regarding organic cultivation on16th Jan,2019 at Sapuapalli in Genja Panchayat under Sorada Block in Ganjam District
Bio-diversity, Climate protection and livelihood for women”s in Fisherman community of Chilika:
PROGREESS is successfully performed the “Biodiversity” and climate protection of Chilika lake’’ programme. The programme was initiated at Rambha with women fisherman community of adjoin Chilika Lake on 4th Nov, 2018. In this context, conservation of coastal resources including lakes, rivers, bio-diversity, forest, wild life, ensuring the welfare of animals and prevention & reduction of pollution and sustainable women fisherman community and enhancement of human well being & livelihood strengthening. We have done discussion, Awareness and some of taken following activities are:
- Wetland management for Bio-diversity and climate protection.
- Human wildlife conflict mitigation.
- Access and benefit sharing partnership.
- Valuation of Eco-system service.
- Women fisherman community- Socio-economical strengthen and livelihood initiatives.
- River / Lake bank mangrove plantation and protection of existing mangroves forest and casuarinas plantation / eco-tourism development and its restoration and plantation.
- Helping a sustainable and responsible fishing.
- Complete protection to designated marine protection area.
- Maintaining ecological balance in marine eco-system.
- More employment generation scope.
- Protection of wetland bird and their aquatic bio-diversity for care / protection and reproduction of migratory birds.
In this connection, PROGREESS conducted meeting with women in fisherman community, more than 100 and above women’s were participated. Mr. Rabindra behera was the convener and organized of the meeting.
Conservation of Bio- diversity, Maize Marketing (Promotion) & Strengthening of Livelihood Programme:
The Tribal women inhabitants of Subalada, Foka, Mangarajpur (Ramagiri) of R.Udayagiri block in Gajapati District were unwilling to come back out of fear of heavy struggle for living condition,
They are creating many women community dwelling. However these villages are right next to reserved forest and many wild animals had been suffering by involved smuggling animal product, valuable tree (used for housing & making bricks), Herbal & tribal products along with maize. The propagation of Prevention of cruelty against animal & plant (PCAP) and the demand that the local people should have control over the sale of Forest- Agricultural- Herbal produce as mandated by the Forest Rights Act (FRA). Despite facing many problems, they are now moving forward with new plans for expanding the farming, developing sericulture, Maize cultivation, Rubber Plantation, Vegetable corps & Medicinal herb and unit for Holistic health. Now they are determined to Struggle against all odds.
In this context, the organization had been taking many programs like capacity building training, organized & involved scientific organic cultivation by Yogic process. And formation of Women groups & their marketing for liaison with upward.